A special trainer from the United Kingdom has been assigned to provide training to prison officers at Her Majesty’s Prison at Balsam Ghut on Tortola.

This was revealed in a recent 284 Media interview with Governor John Rankin, where he highlighted the importance of improving prison officer training, following a deadly stabbing incident at the facility on Sunday May 30.

“We certainly need a sufficient number of prison officers to deal with the number of prisoners in the prison. There are about 106 prisoners in the prison as we speak, but yes I do believe that we do need to improve training for prison officers,” he stated.

He added, “We need to improve security, we need to improve work on rehabilitation and I am pleased to say that a UK trainer would be coming up shortly to assist the prison superintendent and the staff in that particular area.”

Arrests made and external investigation needed

Governor ranking also confirmed that several arrests were made following the stabbing incident at the prison and said that while an internal investigation is ongoing, an external investigation will also be conducted.

“The police have already made a number of arrests in relation to the crimes which appeared have occurred, but we also would widely need to have an external review of security at the prison to make sure not just for these particular set of dreadful instances, but in longer term we can ensure a better security and safety at the prison, safety for the prisoners, safety for the prison officers and to give the public confidence the prison is being properly run,” Governor Rankin explained.

The fatal stabbing incident led to the death of inmate Nichail Chambers, and involved a total of four prisoners.

Following an emergency National Security Council meeting, two senior prison officers who were on duty at the time of the incident were put on administrative leave.